Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Art Blogging: Ferdinand Preiss

Ferdinand Preiss (1882-1943) was a German Art Deco sculptor in chryselephantine. Born in Erbach, he apprenticed in the workshop of famed ivory carver Phillipp Willmann before forming Priess & Kassler, an ivory workshop in Berlin. From 1910 until the onset of the First World War, the business prospered, and then after the interruption of the war, thrived vibrantly in the 1920s. Preiss created numerous, delicately-carved ivory and bronze home furnishings and decorative pieces, such as clocks and lamp stands. His workshop and all of its contents were unfortunately destroyed in a bombing raid in 1945.

Archer. I'm not sure how I feel about ivory as a medium, given the horrific way that it was collected and, well, still is. Which is why the importation of ivory into the US is illegal.

I nonetheless admire the technical skill necessary to not only carve ivory, but to neatly combine it with cast bronze items into a single piece.

Charleston Dancer.

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